Storm nails down berth in Memorial Cup
GUELPH – The Guelph Storm, a team built for this year’s playoffs, are headed to the Memorial Cup.
The Storm claimed the J. Ross Robertson Trophy as Ontario Hockey League champions Sunday as they rallied from an early deficit to drop the Ottawa 67’s 8-3 at the Sleeman Centre. The win gave Guelph a 4-2 victory in the best-of-seven league final.
The hosts came back from a 2-0 deficit at the end of the first period with five consecutive goals in the second including three in a span of one minute and 14 seconds.
The Storm led 5-3 at the end of the second.
Dmitri Samorukov and Isaac Ratcliffe tallied twice each for the Storm while single goals were added by Cedric Ralph, Nick Suzuki, Domenico Commisso and Keegan Stevenson. Sean Durzi, Ratcliffe, Suzuki and Samorukov each had two assists and MacKenzie Entwistle, Commisso, Owen Lalonde and Ralph had one apiece.
Noel Hoefenmayer, Kody Clark and Sasha Chmelevski scored for Ottawa. Getting one assist apiece were Sam Bitten, Jack Quinn, Kevin Bahl, Graeme Clarke, Lucas Chiodo and Tye Felhaber.
The Storm outshot Ottawa 39-26 including a 27-13 advantage after the first period. Guelph went 3-for-6 on its power play while Ottawa went 2-for-5.
Storm netminder Anthony Popovich had 23 saves for the win while Cedrick Andree had 31 saves for the 67’s.
The OHL championship win is the first for the Storm since 2014 and fourth in Storm history as they also won in 1998 and 2004.
It’s the 11th in the history of the franchise as they won seven times as the Toronto Marlboros before the franchise moved to Hamilton to become the Dukes of Hamilton in 1989 and then to Guelph in 1991.
Other Guelph teams to win the Robertson Trophy were the Biltmore Mad Hatters in 1950, 1952 and 1957 and the Platers in 1986.
The Biltmore Mad Hatters were Eastern Canada finalists in 1950 and 1957 and Memorial Cup champions in 1952 and the Platers were Memorial Cup champs in 1986.
The Storm have never won the Memorial Cup, but were runners-up in 1998 and 2014. They were fourth in 2004. They also got into the Canadian Hockey League’s championship tournament as the second OHL entry in 1996 when it was held in Peterborough and 2002 when it was held at the Sleeman Centre and finished fourth both times.
The Storm advance to the Memorial Cup tournament in Halifax where they’ll join the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League champion Rouyn-Noranda Huskies, host Halifax Mooseheads and the Western Hockey League champions, either the Prince Albert Raiders or Vancouver Giants.
The Memorial Cup tournament is to start Friday.
The Storm is to play Rouyn-Noranda Saturday at 3:30 p.m., Halifax Sunday at 7 p.m. and the WHL champions May 21 at 7 p.m.
If a tie-breaker game is needed, it’s to be played May 23 at 7 p.m. while the semifinal is to go May 24 at 7 p.m. and the final is set for May 26 at 7 p.m.
Storm 8 67’s 3
1. Ottawa, Noel Hoefenmayer (Sam Bitten, Jack Quinn), 2:59
2. Ottawa, Kody Clark (Kevin Bahl, Graeme Clarke), 8:30 pp
Penalties: Nate Schnarr Gue (check from behind), 6:31; Noel Hoefenmayer Ott (boarding), 13:21; Nate Schnarr Gue (high sticking), 16:01; Mitchell Hoelscher Ott (slashing), 19:06.
3. Guelph, Dmitri Samorukov (Sean Durzi, Isaac Ratcliffe), 0:51 pp
4. Guelph, Isaac Ratcliffe (MacKenzie Entwistle), 7:46
5. Guelph, Isaac Ratcliffe (Nick Suzuki, Dmitri Samorukov), 14:43 pp
6. Guelph, Cedric Ralph (Domenico Commisso, Owen Lalonde), 15:04
7. Guelph, Nick Suzuki (Isaac Ratcliffe, Dmitri Samorukov), 15:57
8. Ottawa, Sasha Chmelevski (Lucas Chiodo, Tye Felhaber), 18:52 pp
Penalties: Kevin Bahl Ott (slashing), 13:34; Alexey Toropchenko Gue (interference on goaltender), 17:59; Nick Suzuki Gue (hooking), 18:08.
9. Guelph, Dmitri Samorukov (Sean Durzi, Nick Suzuki), 10:45 pp
10. Guelph, Domenico Commisso (Cedric Ralph), 15:35 en
11. Guelph, Keegan Stevenson (unassisted) 16:37
Penalties: Tye Felhaber Ott (cross checking), 9:09; Alexey Toropchenko Gue (tripping), 11:33; Tye Felhaber Ott (slashing), 18:16; Hudson Wilson Ott (unsportsmanlike conduct), 19:13.
Shots on Goal
Goalies: Cedrick Andree (L, 38 shots-31 saves), Ottawa; Anthony Popovich (W, 26 shots-23 saves), Guelph.
Power Plays (goals-chances): Ottawa 2-5; Guelph 3-6.
Faceoffs Won: Ottawa 30, Guelph 40.
- Guelph Sports Journal